Minneapolis city leaders decry July 4th violence, including shooting that wounded 7

A man at a podium
Mayor Jacob Frey addresses the media on July 5, after a night that included a shooting that injured seven people and multiple other police calls.
Peter Cox | MPR News

Updated: July 6, 6 a.m.

Seven people were hospitalized after a shooting late Monday night at Boom Island Park in Minneapolis — part of a night of recklessness and violence that city officials said stretched police thin and led to critical injuries and vandalism.

“This is conduct that should not be acceptable in any city, the kind of violence, the recklessness, and in some cases, idiotic behavior that we saw, shouldn't be tolerated,” Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said during a Monday afternoon news conference. “And let me be clear, it won't be tolerated.”

The Minneapolis Park Board said in a statement that several of the victims of the Boom Island shooting were critically wounded.

The shooting was reported at about 11:30 p.m. Monday at the park along the Mississippi River, north of downtown.

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A Park Board spokesperson said there was not a formal Fourth of July event or fireworks at the park, but people had gathered to celebrate the holiday.

"After shots were fired, the large group that had gathered in the park dispersed, many leaving prior to police arriving," the Park Board said in a news release. "A majority of the shooting victims later arrived at local hospitals on their own."

Those hospitals then notified police.

An update Tuesday evening stated that seven victims, not eight as initially reported, were wounded by gunshots. The eighth victim reported previously was from a separate incident but arrived to the hospital at the same time.

The seven victims include: two 17-year-old males who were treated and released; a 17-year-old female admitted to a hospital for treatment; two 18-year-old males in serious condition; an 18-year-old female in serious condition; and a 22-year-old male admitted for treatment.

Minneapolis Park Police asked that anyone with information on the shooting call the department at (612) 230-6550.

There were more than 1,300 911 calls between 9 a.m. Monday and 4 a.m. Tuesday, the amount typically seen in a 24-hour period.

MPD says there were more than 80 officers on duty, including some working overtime.

Frey called the night "a game of whack-a-mole," with police going from scene to scene.

"We had a significant number of events that ... I would characterize as unsanctioned and unplanned and also coupled with complex, violent crime scenes that required our personnel to have to divide a lot of their attention and be extraordinarily diligent in how we responded," Minneapolis Deputy Police Chief Erick Fors said at the Monday afternoon news conference.

Along Second Street, dozens of people gathered before midnight, shooting off fireworks at buildings, out of moving cars and at people.

Nick Zillges was on his way home from a bartending shift when someone shot a roman candle at him from a moving car. He said he wasn't hurt, but he went to the roof of his apartment building, where he watched as fireworks were being set off below.

"I did see a couple of people down on the street that were waving guns around,” he said. “And, you know, I figured that was ample reason to actually call the police. You know, fireworks and stuff, that's one thing that once you start bringing guns, and that's when I think that's gotta end."